Posts Tagged ‘health’

Nutrition Series: Protein Recommendations

Posted on: April 22nd, 2013 by Kim McCreery No Comments

Good nutrition is one of the pillars of good health. This week we start a 6 week series of simple, straightforward posts on different components of nutrition to help seniors, adults with disabilities, and caregivers make informed food decisions. As a bonus, each week we will include a recipe based on the topic. Week one: Protein Recommendations. Remember to consult your doctor before you make major changes to your diet especially if you are on medications and/or have a medical condition.


Protein Recommendations

1. Mix it up. Most reasonable diets provide enough protein for healthy people. Eating a variety of foods will ensure that you get all of the amino acids you need.

2. Go low on saturated fat. Beans, fish and poultry provide plenty of protein, without much saturated fat. Steer clear of fatty meats and use whole-milk dairy products sparingly.

3. Limit red meat—and avoid processed meat. Research suggests that people who eat even modest amounts of red meat have a higher risk of developing colon cancer, heart disease, and diabetes, and a higher risk of dying from heart disease, cancer, or any cause. There’s also substantial evidence that replacing red meat with fish, poultry, beans, or nuts, could help prevent heart disease
and diabetes—and could lower the risk of early death. So make red meat (beef, pork, lamb) only an occasional part of your diet—no more than two 3-ounce servings a week—if you eat it at all. And skip the processed stuff—bacon, hot dogs, and deli meats—since that’s linked even more strongly to cancer, heart disease, and diabetes risk.

4. Eat soy in moderation. Tofu and other soy foods are an excellent red meat alternative. In some cultures, tofu and soy foods are a protein staple, and we don’t suggest any change. But if you haven’t grown up eating lots of soy, there’s no reason to go overboard: Two to four servings a week is a good target.

5. Balance carbs and protein. Cutting back on highly processed carbohydrates and increasing protein improves levels of blood triglycerides and HDL, and so may reduce your chances of having a heart attack, stroke, or other form of cardiovascular disease. It may also make you feel full longer, and stave off hunger pangs.


Protein Packed Peanut Butter Chocolate Balls Recipe

  • 1 cup of low-fat peanut butter (creamy or crunchy)
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 cup of Instant protein shake mix (found in the health section of your grocery store). Recommended brands: Aria Protein Shake Mix 50% whey/50% soy chocolate flavored; Gensoy Soy Protein Shake chocolate flavored.)

In a microwave safe bowl, heat peanut butter and honey for about 30 seconds to soften. Stir together and gradually add the protein. Mix well. Form into balls and place on wax paper. Cool and refrigerate. Variation: roll balls in chocolate chips, coconut, granola.

Eight Steps to Avoid the Flu

Posted on: January 24th, 2013 by Kim McCreery No Comments

Influenza (commonly referred to as the Flu) season is in high gear! Now is the time to take preventative action. The good news is that there are commonsense steps you can take to help avoid getting ill.

  1. Get a flu vaccination. It’s not too late.Vaccinations are available at doctor offices, pharmacies, and
    grocery stores.
  2. Wash your hands
    frequently, especially if you are out in public interacting with other people.Use soap and water or an alcohol-based rub.
  3. Disinfect frequently touched surfaces.
  4. Get adequate rest and manage stress levels. Our bodies are susceptible to illness when we are run down.
  5. Exercise. Regular exercise helps to keep our immune system strong.
  6. Drink fluids and eat plenty of fruits and vegetables every day.
  7. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with your hands.
  8. Avoid close contact with sick people.

For more information on the Flu visit


Laughter is Good Medicine for Seniors and Caregivers

Posted on: November 8th, 2012 by Kim McCreery No Comments


Playful Laughter!


Laughter has many scientifically proven benefits for our mind/body/spirit. A daily dose of laughter can make a huge difference in the life of an older adult who might be dealing with physical ailments, isolation and depression. It can also provide a much needed lift for those dedicated caregivers who often neglect their own health. Here are a few of the sometimes surprising benefits.

  1. Laughter relaxes the whole body. A good, hearty laugh relieves physical tension and stress, leaving your muscles relaxed
    for up to 45 minutes after.
  2. Laughter boosts the immune system.Laughter decreases stress hormones and increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies, thus improving your resistance to disease.
  3. Laughter triggers the release of endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals. Endorphins promote an overall sense of well-being and can even temporarily relieve pain.
  4. Laughter lowers blood pressure and increases muscle range of motion.
  5. Laughter is great exercise. Dr. William Fry, well-known research scientist from Stanford University, scientifically proved that 10 minutes of laughter is equal to 30 minutes on the rowing machine. Laughter is a great cardiovascular workout. As an exercise, it has similar benefits as compared to other aerobic activities like jogging, swimming, and cycling.

Read more about the benefits of laughter at

Not finding anything funny? Practice laughing for no reason and you’ll reap the same benefits from fake laughter as you will from genuine laughter. Make it your goal to laugh continuously for 10 minutes a day, every day. You’ll be amazed at the difference it will make in your life!

At Home Solutions offers free classes on laughter yoga in the communities we serve. Laughter Yoga combines playful laughing exercises and deep breathing, no contortion required! Classes are taught by a certified laughter yoga leader and are appropriate for seniors and adults with disabilities. For more information, call 1-888-496-3983